Amit Shah denies deal with Saurav Ganguly
Mumbai: Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday denied any deal with Sourav Ganguly over BCCI chairman’s post. He was responding to the buzz that in a quid pro quo the BJP would field him in Bengal elections in 2021. ‘‘There has been no such deal or talks with him. Some people are just bad-mouthing Sourav."
Shah, whose son Jay is set to become the secretary, also asserted that it is not he who ‘‘decides who will be the BCCI President.’’ The BCCI has its own election process for it, the Home Minister explained.
Ganguly, the only candidate to file his nomination for the BCCI president’s post, is set to be elected unopposed. That will make him the 2nd India cricketer, after Maharaja of Vizianagaram (Vizzy), to serve in this capacity.
The Maharaja had led India during a Test tour of England in 1936. Despite playing only 3 Test matches for India, Vizzy served as BCCI president between 1954 and 1956. Such was the hold of royalty over cricket, then.
Taking care of first-class cricketers and setting the house in order is among his top priorities, Ganguly said as he filed his nomination papers. He will also be focussing on improving the lives of cricketers in domestic first class circuit. "My biggest focus will be on first-class cricket.
I have been very vocal about taking care of first-class cricketers. Indian cricket administration has to be the best in the world. We have to get the administration in order," he said.
‘‘Until 10.30 in the night yesterday, I was not aware of this. Then I was informed that I have to be the President of the BCCI," Ganguly said. He added that his experience as Cricket Association of Bengal President may have counted in his quick accession.
"I think experience was looked at. I have spent the last six years now in cricket administration.’’
While Jay Shah will be the secretary, BJP leader Anurag Thakur's brother Arun Dhumal is set to become the treasurer of the BCCI. Also, former cricketer Brijesh Patel is set to take over as IPL chairman.